The Trade-Mart Dundee Stars have to put it all on the line tonight to win two crucial points at home against Cardiff Devils if they want to remain in the top six and avoid a tightening battle for the final playoff spots.

By Kris Smith

The Stars picked up a point in Manchester last night as they fell 4-3 to the Storm after overtime but they are now four points behind Coventry Blaze in fifth, level on points with Manchester and only four clear of Fife Flyers, who sit just outside the playoff berths in ninth.

On Saturday evening, Dundee made their second visit to the Storm Shelter this season and after a scoreless first period, Jake Elmer put the Taysiders ahead inside the opening two minutes of the second session.

Defenseman, Kris Inglis sprung Elmer forward with a long pass up the ice and the Canadian went in on goal alone, slipping the puck between Manchester goalie, Evan Weninger’s legs to make it 1-0.

The home side would hit back in the 29th minute as Tyler Hinam punched home a shorthanded goal off the underside of the crossbar, to capitalise on a high turnover during the Stars first powerplay of the game.

Spencer Naas then netted his 24th goal of the season by lifting home the rebound from Brendan Harms’ shot to put Dundee back in front on 37 minutes and in the third period, Brent Beaudoin bagged a powerplay goal to extend the lead to 3-1.

In the 49th minute, Dundee had moved the puck well before Weninger made a number of saves but he failed to stop Beaudoin from turning home the rebound at the back post.

However, Matt Ginn’s men then hit back with two goals in less than two minutes to tie the game at 3-3, as Johnny Corniel and Mitchell Martan both fired past Lucas Brine in the Dundee net.

After a tense finish to regulation, neither side could find the winner and in overtime, Dundee put the home team under heavy amounts of pressure for the first four of five minutes, but in the final minute, Manchester broke down the ice and Cameron Critchlow would be able to lift the puck past Brine to win the extra point for the Storm.



Meanwhile, the Devils were in Fife last night and came back from 3-0 down to tie the game and then again from 4-3 behind before beating the Flyers in a penalty shootout.

The Kirkcaldy side had 3-0 lead through 33 minutes but two powerplay goals from Jamie Arniel and Brandon Alderson had them only behind after two periods, then Joey Martin levelled the game up in the third.

Despite the Flyers getting in front again with 10 minutes to play, Arniel bagged another five minutes from time before Cole Sanford would go on to score the only penalty in the shootout to win the extra point for Pete Russell’s side.

The Devils have beaten Dundee in all four meetings this season and have also won all 10 league games since they played in the Continental Cup, including a 7-4 win over Dundee in Cardiff.

However, the Devils have always been unable to stop the Stars from making fast and late comeback attempts, as they have been put under intense pressure in the dying minutes of many matches.



Speaking after last night’s overtime loss in Manchester, Stars Head Coach, Marc LeFebvre said: “You want to win them all and that is a playoff game but we could not get it done.

“You have a 3-1 lead with 10 minutes left, you have to stay composed and be able to play under pressure because it is a tough building to come into as it is, but at the end of the day it did not happen for us.”

Then looking ahead to tonight’s clash with Cardiff, he continued: “We know every game will be tough but we have to scratch and claw for everything and every point from here on out.

“We are in that mix with every team now, where everyone is gaining points, so we need to pick up points and that is not just one point here, one point there, we need to start picking up two points from games.”

Face-off for tonight’s home game against Cardiff is at 5pm and you can buy your tickets HERE!


All images: Derek Black.

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Trade-Mart Dundee Stars Team
54 Games
22 Wins
25 Losses
7 OT Losses
51 Points